Susie’s story

Susie, 14, is a carer for her mum. When her dad was involved in an accident, she supported her family and helped manage things around the house, and still didn’t miss a single session of Sound Creators.

Susie also has dyslexia, so she needs extra time and different formats to help her learn. Fortunately, she was able to access funding and benefit from additional one-to-one tutorials.

“I am usually a very shy person around new people and it took me a while to feel more relaxed and confident. [As time went on] I felt more free, and it felt like everyone was supporting each other to feel more open and free to express themselves. I met new people and I knew they were going through a similar situation to me and they know what it is like. This made me feel more comfortable to speak out a bit more. It helps to let people know what you are feeling and why, it’s about expression. I now think that your voice matters as much as your actions do!!”

“I valued learning how to give and receive feedback, I really liked the honesty of the feedback I got, and how this helped me improve – it helps me know which parts I need to work on – I think this is really going to help me in the future. My experience in one word, AMAZING.”

Macie’s story

Following the murder of George Floyd and the resurgence of Black Lives Matter, Macie, an EmpowHER participant, became more politically active. She attended Black Lives Matter protests with her family, and was asked to speak to the crowd.

“I was terrified, but it is important. I spoke about colourism. I’ve been learning a lot about colourism because people think I’m black and think my sister is Asian. We get different types of racist comments, even though we are sisters”.

Macie spoke at the ‘Race’ British Red Cross role model event, educating attendees about colourism and presenting her experiences and advice to young people. The event received excellent feedback from young people and staff.

“That was the best explanation of colourism I have heard. I really understand now”.

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